Use of Iron Ore Overburden As a Precursor for the Synthesis of an Alkali-activated Binder


The iron ore beneficiation process produces a large quantity of waste. Mining companies are looking for technologies that make it possible to dispose of their waste and transform it into raw material for the manufacture of products that can be applied in other areas, for example in the production of concrete, mortar, ceramics, blocks, and bricks. This study aimed at the feasibility of using a calcined iron ore overburden as a precursor of alkali-activated binders. For alkaline activation of the precursors, sodium hydroxide solution and sodium silicate were used in the atomic proportions Al / Na = 2 and Si / Al> 0,7. Mineralogical and microstructural characterization was carried out by X-ray diffraction (XRD) and scanning electron microscopy with energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (SEM/EDX). Tests of compressive strength were performed for the binders with 7, 14, 21 and 28 of curing days. The results of the analyses demonstrated that the properties of the alkali-activated binders produced with the overburden were similar to the binders obtained by precursors used traditionally. It was found, therefore, that the calcined iron ore overburden, can be considered a precursor for obtaining alkaline activated binders

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